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Old 08-14-2012, 10:52 AM   #1
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Flush framing basement beam


Cliffs:
Looking to flush frame basement beam of house. Anyone have this done before?

Long version:

My 1950s basement already has low ceilings at 7 ft there's a tripled 2x10 main beam that runs the length of the house and has the HVAC ducts run underneath, underneath that area is 6'3 :: Even worse if you come down the stairs the last riser puts you smack in front of the beam :: I'm not too tall but I've nailed my head on it before and it freakin hurts with the old growth wood. I put a soft edge guard there as a band aid. I've considered relocating or modifying the stairs to eliminate the head knocker. But flush framing would eliminate the low hanging beam completely.

Soooo, my thinking was to relocate the HVAC ducts (I have a contractor coming this week to look) and then have the beam flush framed. I have spoken to two structural engineering firms in the area and am looking at a third. Currently leaning towards one firm who seems very "DIY" friendly. So far his advice would be both the basement and the 1st level have to be reinforced. He says two 2x4 walls per level can support this, then something like an LVL beam could be put into place and even some of the existing columns can be eliminated.

Since I'm handy I can construct the temporary supports, he'll inspect then I can cut out of the beam, then his workers will install the new beam and it would run $2000-3000ish. Or they can do all the work and it would be $5000-10k+

I know it seems silly to spend this $ but the way I look at it, is should I sell in the future I believe it would appeal to more buyers since the basement would be more useable particuarly if the future buyers are tall .

And yes I have considered getting the basement dug lower or the house jacked up but such a large undertaking would not be worth it on such an old house. Sooo, I believe this is a good compromise. Anyone have their basement beam flush framed?

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Old 08-14-2012, 11:16 AM   #2
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Flush framing basement beam


Just my opion but, I would never suggest this is a DIY job!
A whole lot of factors come into play on this one.
Going to also get a permit on this one.

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Old 08-14-2012, 11:28 AM   #3
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Flush framing basement beam


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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
Just my opion but, I would never suggest this is a DIY job!
A whole lot of factors come into play on this one.
Going to also get a permit on this one.
Right, I certainly would not DIY the entire thing The DIY part is constructing the temporary walls in the basement and the main level of the house, according to the instructions and inspection of the structural engineer. They would then put in the beam, but I may have them do the actual cutting of the beams.

Yes, I'll do this the proper way, with the proper permits, inspections and the structural engineering firm (unlike some of the threads I've read in here )
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